4.19.2009

Windows & Cigar Boxes

In 2003 I started a small business, a tiny merchandising company. I don’t write about this often on my blog, probably because there isn’t much to say. LOL. I design windows for malls. When I have a project, I work on it on the weekends so it doesn’t interfere with my regular job. I have projects about 4 times a year. It’s nice to have a little extra cash and a creative outlet.

Over the weekend I had a project in San Antonio at Riv*rcenter Mall. A department store was recently bought out by the mall and until they decide what to do with the space, the windows are empty. The mall assigns different stores to each space. I pick up their merchandise and signage and create a window. I have a prop room at the mall with items I’ve accumulated over the years.

Here are a few examples of what I’ve done. These pictures are terrible because of the reflection on the windows. Also, there are black dividers between the windows but they're not installed yet. Sorry.













Over the weekend I did a window for a cigar store in the mall. When I arrived to get their merchandise, the owner gave me empty cigar boxes for the window design. I asked him if he ever sold the empty cigar boxes. He said, “Yes, come back when you’re done working.” Check out these very cool cigar boxes. The plain wood boxes were $2 each and the regular boxes were a $1 each. I can’t wait to do something crafty and fun with these! I’ve thought about painting them and adding embellishments. I’ve seen the cigar box purses but I know I’d never carry it, so I’ve ruled out that idea. Any suggestions?

Andrea, when I bought these I thought of you. I wish you were here to play!





The only bummer is the boxes smell like cigars... gross! If you're able to get some, don't forget to air them out.

33 comments:

Margarita said...

I like the second window a lot! They are all good, that sounds like a fun side job. Please post what you will do with the cigar boxes! I have a bunch of them (my bf refuses to throw out) but never thought of doing something creative with them. Thanks
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midnight macaroons said...

Wow!!! You did a FANTASTIC job!!! I like all the window displays but the second one is my favorite because it's so girly. I like the last window too.

I've collected cigar/soap boxes and used them to hold stationary. They are the right size for little note cards and they look cool on my shelf. But you can put a little tissue paper inside and use them for gift boxes also. Just wrap a ribbon and stick a flower on top. It looks really cool! I'm anxious to hear what you'll do with yours. You have a great eye for decorating.

Belle- Pink Cupcake said...

My mom uses them to hold all of her art supplies! She stacks them and they look fabulous!

Woman Interrupted said...

And you could add party planning to your list of fun things to do on the side!

You could line the insides of the boxes with fabric and tuck a dryer sheet in between. I love the idea of stacking them and using them to store items in a craft room or bathroom.

Or, what about filling them with party favors for a casino night party? (deck of cards, cigar or cigarette gum, dice, little chocolates filled with liquor.)

I have a collection of the metal cylinders that the individual cigars come in and I don't know what to do with them but I can't part with them either!

Preppy 101 said...

Your work is outstanding!! You are a creative genius! What a fun job. xoxo

little miss cupcake said...

My BF made purse out of them and they came out soo cute

AndreaLeigh said...

ok, i did just wake up from a nap, but when I first read this I thought you literally meant you designed windows. haha. it took me a while to realize that it meant you design window spaces. i'm such a dork.

i love your spaces! that is fun, and a creative outlet.

i wish i was there for a craft day! you could do some jewelry boxes for christmas. just cover with fabric, paint, or scrapbook paper, line the inside, and then go crazy with jewels, monograms, etc.

i know whatever you come up with will be great! i can't wait to see the finished project!

i just read the other comments and stationary sounds cool too. i was looking at them as gifts but they would look cool decoupaged to match your apartment or office.

Wearing Mascara said...

Verry cool window designs love! You are very talented (I wouldn't be able to pull off some of your handy work!)

As far as cigar boxes go, I actually have some experience with decorating them (SHOCKER!). My mom was my girl scout leader and we did it for a craft using glue and um... shit what's that stuff that's like glue that goes on clear? Anyone?

Anyways, I recommend keeping them around and making jewelry boxes using scapbook findings or magazines. Perfect for new baby rooms or friends.

Also, about the smell. Luckily it goes away after awhile (I know this because I have one in my room that I decorated awhile back).

xoxo

jlc said...

That's so cool!!! I'm glad you posted about it!! :)

Petunia said...

I love your window displays! That must be fun to create!

Jules said...

What a great side job and you're really good at at. I especially like the design in the 2nd window. So creative and pretty!

I am not crafty, but I'm sure that any of the suggestions the ladies on here have come up with would be great. You'll have to let us know what you decide to do with them.

Chitown Meg said...

that's awesome!!! i'm very impressed :) thanks for reading my blogpost today.

AmyT said...

that is so awesome!! I had a cigar box purse before..it was very cute!

jlc said...

In response to your comment : haha!!! It's def a nickname. I'm glad you're not like other people who have asked and think it's a weird Asian name. You are farrrr too cultured to be like that. And plus, we know that wouldn't make sense. :)


The answer to that is in Part 3 of my Q&A's. It's the very first question with the whole background story. :)

CarolinaGirl said...

I made my husband a great cufflinks holder out of an old cigar box one year for Christmas. I got the inside from a jewelry store. It is made to hold rings in the slots, but his cufflinks fit perfectly. It holds 50 pair. I already need to make him another. Have fun, and I can't wait to see what you come up with.

Danielle said...

So fun to finally get to see some windows that you've done!

Love the cigar boxes. I still think we need to craft together some day. If I ever make it out your way we should plan some craft time :)

Sissy Jenn said...

Your windows look good... very "un-City Sisters like"!!! ha. you've become an artist... next stop Bergdorf Goodman windows in NYC!

BTW, i like the cigar boxes. wonder if they would sell me some for a buck? do you have any extras?

stacilynfeldman said...

ooo! what a fantastic side job! i've been so wanting to get into this on the side for a long time, but have NO idea how to get started! those windows look great!! (sorry for the over-use of exclamation points... it's really that fab!)

Sweet Simplicity said...

What a neat business!! That is so cool!

Casey said...

Love the windows and the boxes! You should search "cigar boxes" on Etsy and see what people have made. Have fun!

Treasure Ann said...

Beautiful window displays. I love to hear about people with their own business. I like the cigar purses to, but painting them and puttting embillishments on them is a good idea. Maybe you can also do a collage on some. Something Victorian collage like. They also make great jewelry or keepsake boxes for little souvenirs. Have fun with the ideas, I'd like to see what you come up with.

yours truly... said...

What a fun little side job!! So impressive, you are great at what you do girlie!!!

Kate said...

The windows all look great. Can't wait to see what you do with the boxes!

Whitney said...

That IS a fun job!! And I really like the windows. You've even managed to turn sports stuff into something fab!

Can't wait to see what you come up with for the cigar boxes!

A Balancing Act said...

You are so creative!! I would to do what you are doing! I love merchandising!

Angie said...

Wow!! You are so creative!! What a great side job, it sounds like a lot of fun!! Thanks for tagging me!! I am going to do it on my blog tomorrow.
Have a good day!!

Amy said...

Wow! I love learning new things about people - I never really think about who actually designs the windows as I walk by - now I will think of you everytime I see one.

PS- thanks for the Easter wishes. I really need to update - it's been so crazy in our neck of the woods.

Lexiloo said...

I'd cover the cigar boxes with all different colored buttons! That would be cute and fun, I think! I was also going to suggest looking at etsy for ideas, but someone beat me to it!

My name is Megan... said...

how awesome! love them! you are so creative girl!

Melissa Good Taste said...

I have seen those windows in person! I went to SA in Feb! Wow! Good work. That mall had the worst Macy's ever though... bummer :(

Heather said...

You are so talented!

Janet said...

The boxes will be fun to decorate.
Love, Mom

Janet said...

The boxes will be fun to decorate.
Love, Mom